THL Toolbox > Audio-Video > Creation Of Audio-video > Documentary Types
Contributor(s): Nelson Walker
- Typically address the spectators directly through an on-screen commentator or
- Often make liberal use of interviews, b-roll, and archival footage.
- Tend to be lyrical rather than didactic, poetic rather than argumentative.
- Typically more self-consciously stylized and aestheticized than expository films,
but often incorporating many of the same elements.
- Capturing the spontaneity and uninhibited flow of life and events as they happen.
- Often adopts the visual language of fictional film intended to articulate continuous
time and space (e.g. diverse camera angles, shot/reverse shot, close-ups, pans and tilts)
- Self-conscious or self-reflexive style addresses the process of representation
itself and often foregrounds the relationship between the filmmaker and the spectators, as well as between the filmmaker and the subjects.
- Some reflexive films are autobiographical -- the filmmaker may appear on screen
or talk to the audience in a voice-over. Others are more formally reflexive and highlight the relationship between cinema and the world.
- Documentaries that donʼt easily fit any of the other categories. Often they draw
on allied art forms (painting, dance, sculpture, photography, etc.) and can even incorporate elements of fiction.